Cityview’s Best of 2017.... Best North Bar.... This Beaverdale tradition has kept the Irish — and Cityview voters — coming back for more since 1984. Cooney’s is casual and doesn’t have a dress code or fancy shots, but if you plan on going, make sure to bring cash because it doesn’t accept credit cards. The bar does have plenty of fresh popcorn and Bloody Mary’s, though.


Cityview’s Best of 2016.... Best North Bar.... Brian Cooney is cool. Our readers know it, and so do we. His Irish pub in the heart of Beaverdale is an obvious winner in this category. Its history in the neighborhood dates back to 1984, so it’s a reliable go-to for people looking for friendly conversation in a laid-back atmosphere. Brian can tell you a story about every piece of décor in the dimly-lit hideaway, and his regulars also have a few good tales of their own.


Cityview’s Bar Guide April, 2009....  “Well it’s a Bloody Mary Morning,” sings Willie Nelson as he talks about the heartbreak of his lady leaving. The perfect morning drink, the Bloody Mary has become a staple of the bar scene. No matter if you drink one in the morning, afternoon or evening, that refreshing taste will stick with you. The garnishes in the drink have almost become more important than the taste. I’ve seen bartenders shove in pickles, bacon, cheese cubes, shrimp, okra and Slim Jims, among other things, almost overflowing the glass. Plus more garnish in a Bloody Mary, means less booze. But at Cooney’s Tavern, they are mixing up some the best homemade Bloody Marys in town.

“We have always made ours from scratch,” Owner Brian Cooney said. “We make them one at a time, rather than by the bulk. Plus we can customize it, more spicy or mild, to your specific taste.”

Customers can enjoy a pint-glass size Bloody Mary with a beer-back. I ordered mine extra spicy, and it left my lips tingling with heat as the ice-cold beer-back soothed the fire.

Cooney’s adds all the right ingredients to make a crisp, relaxing drink. Who would of thought that mixing salt, pepper, celery salt, vodka, Worchester sauce, vegetable juice, Frank’s Red Hot sauce and Sacramento Bloody Mary Mix would create such a treat for your taste buds? Cooney garnishes his masterpiece with olives and cherry peppers.

“We always get suggestions, and people like to add their own personal touch,” Cooney said. “But we focus on the basic recipe. People stop in to drink them all times of the day. They’re just not a morning drink.”

As Cooney mixed my drink, customers commented about how “they are the best in town.” They could be right. It had a nice bite and a robust flavor, which left me wanting another. I agree with Willie, every morning should be a “Bloody Mary Morning.” — Jared Curtis


Cityview’s Best of 2009.... Best Central/North Bar
“A staple of the Beaverdale neighborhood for years, Cooney's Tavern is one of the most likable bars in town. We’re not sure if it's the laid back atmosphere, the tasty Bloody Mary’s or owner Brian Cooney's charisma behind the bar. But it's a great place to grab a drink, no matter what side of town you live on.”


metromix des moines....  “This family-owned tavern has been in business since 1984 and quickly became a favorite neighborhood hangout. Cooney's Tavern keeps it simple and uncomplicated by only accepting cash and serving only alcohol. This low-key pub purposefully eliminated shot specials from the menu to avoid excessive inebriation and all that it entails, so if you are in the mood for a quiet, relaxing evening with friends, consider Cooney's Tavern.”


Yelp... “This is old school tavern all the way. Cooney's is owned by the brother of local news caster Kevin Cooney.  This is not a place to party, this is a place to unwind.  The age can very by time of day.  This is the kind of place to shoot the shit, unwind, and drink a few.”